This project addresses the presence of the leaky pipeline in Canadian sociology by creating a structure for knowledge sharing, drawing from an existing mentorship program (Bos & Schneider, 2012; Canadian Sociological Association, 2019). Participants will meet virtually and without significant cost throughout the year, and this Connections Grant will resource four virtual meetings and a two-day workshop before the 2021 Congress meeting in which participants will develop mentorship best practices, and gain confidence from existing in intentional solidarity. By building on an existing mentorship program that facilitated the formation of one-on-one relationships, this SSHRC proposal is able to harness an existing CSA program to amplify our capacity to successfully complete project objectives. In this year’s work, we will focus particularly on mechanisms for how to thrive despite institutional and individual racisms over the academic career.
Rather than putting our collective best intentions into an ad hoc system in which individual mentor judgements define the mentorship individual graduate students receive, we will implement and build upon best practices to structure the professionalization of racialized graduate students in a way that prioritizes their success institutionally while maintaining the integrity of non-White cultural norms. Over the course of the SSHRC-resourced knowledge mobilization activities, we will compile best practices for mentorship of BIPOC graduate students in sociology through a website, intended to be a living document. In addition, we will write and publish a peer-reviewed journal article detailing best practices for mentoring BIPOC students with issues of institutional and individual racisms. Combining elements of the pilot program in 2019-2020, feedback from mentors and/or mentees about ways the programme could be improved, and literature regarding best practices in mentorship overall, we present the below outline for the upcoming BIPOC mentorship program, with attention paid to SSHRC-funded elements.
Presenters will meet monthly via online video chat, with meetings will be scheduled at program initiation. Meetings have suggested conversation points.
Program participation comes with membership in a writing cohort that “meets” weekly via Zoom to write their individual projects – theses, dissertations, journal articles, and books.
Conference attendance is an important part of professionalization and occupational integration – and an opportunity to expand social networks in formal and informal settings
The lack of community and open communication regarding the realities of BIPOC identity in the academy significantly hampers our ability to be successful. We open an intentional space for sharing and solidarity-building.
Developing a decolonized scholarly voice in resistance to existing research hegemonies. This topic is given increased time and attention given its significance to the success of BIPOC students during their graduate study.
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